A crew member who is serving on a ship or aircraft in the United States needs a crew visa. Crew members generally need a combination transit/crew visa (C-1/D) who transit though the United States or its waters. Though, in some cases, individuals may only need the D Visa (D1 and D2 visa).

Crew members who are working aboard vessels within the Outer Continental Shelf might be eligible for a modified B-1 visa in lieu of a crew visa.

Crew members wishing for an entry in the United States through time-off between flights or cruises are eligible to apply for a B-1/B-2 visa to use during these personal/vacation days. Visa applicants applying concurrently for both a C-1/D and a B-1/B-2 visa pay only one visa application government fee.

Mostly, a national of a foreign country who is willing to enter the United States must first get a visa, either a nonimmigrant visa for short stay, or an immigrant visa for indefinite stay (permanent residence). The “D-visas” for the crewmember are nonimmigrant visas for individuals working on sea vessels or international airlines in the United States, offering services necessary for ordinary operation and planning to depart the United States on the same vessel or any other vessel in 29 days.

Source: U.S. Department of State

To apply for a transit visa, you must show:

  • Determined to pass in immediate and continuous transit through the United States.
  • A common carrier ticket or other proofs of transportation arrangements to your destination.
  • Proof of sufficient funds to perform the purpose of your transit passage.
  • Approval of entering another country upon departure from the United States


To apply for other C, D or C-1/D visas (D1 and D2 Visa), you must prove to a consular officer that:

  • The sole purpose of your journey is to enter the United States for transit or crew purpose only
  • You have no intention to be compensated by a U.S. source while in the United States, except that you have been approved a temporary work visa.
  • You organize to stay for a limited period of time.
  • You have evidence of enough funds to cover all expenditures while in the United States.
Source: U.S. Department of State

To apply for a D1 and D2 visa, you must follow these following steps:

Step 1

Complete the Nonimmigrant Visa Electronic Application (DS-160) form.

Step 2

Pay the visa application fee.

Step 3

  • Schedule your appointment on the web page. You will need the following things in order to schedule your appointment:
  • Your passport
  • The receipt number from your Visa Fee receipt.
  • The ten (10) digit barcode number from your DS-160 confirmation page

Step 4

Visit the U.S. Embassy or Consulate on the date and time of your visa interview. You must bring a printed copy of your appointment letter, your DS-160 confirmation page, one photograph taken within the last six months, your current and all old passports, and the original visa fee payment receipt. Applications without all of these items will not be accepted.

Source: U.S. Department of State

To apply for a transit or crew member visa, you must submit the following:

  • A Nonimmigrant Visa Electronic Application (DS-160) Form. Visit the DS-160 web page for more information about the DS-160.
  • A passport valid for travel to the United States with a validity date at least six months beyond your intended period of stay in the United States (unless country-specific agreements provide exemptions). If more than one person is included in your passport, each person desiring a visa must submit an application.
  • One (1) 2”x2” (5cmx5cm) photograph taken within the last six months. This web page has information about the required photo format.
  • A receipt showing payment of your US$160 non-refundable nonimmigrant visa application processing fee paid in local currency. This web page has more information about paying this fee. If a visa is issued, there may be an additional visa issuance reciprocity fee, depending on your nationality. The Department of State’s website can help you find out if you must pay a visa issuance reciprocity fee and what the fee amount is.
  • If applicable, a seaman’s book valid beyond the expiration date of your employment contract and all prior seamen’s books. Crew members must submit an official report of loss if they are unable to submit the book.

In addition to these items, you must present an interview appointment letter confirming that you booked an appointment through this service. You may also bring whatever supporting documents you believe support the information provided to the consular officer.

Source: U.S. Department of State

The application fee for applying for D1 and D2 visa starts from $160.

Source: U.S. Department of State